Dispatches from the war on drugs from author (Angle of Attack, 1992), screenwriter (The China Syndrome), and filmmaker (The Murder off Fred Hampton) Gray. His conclusion: We’re losing.
In 10 days, a mid-level “crack” dealer takes in $451,000. Colombian drug lords are multibillionaires. In one year, 1996, worldwide opium production increased by 20 percent. Such facts, concludes Gray, indicate that despite an 80-year battle in the US to fight drug use through prohibition, despite the U.S. government spending $300 billion in the last 15 years alone on the war on drugs, drug production, sale, and use continue unabated. Gray further contends that this war on drugs is tearing apart the social fabric of the US. Few are the government antidrug agencies not contaminated by corruption. While the vast majority of drug users are white, those convicted of drug sale or use are overwhelmingly black and Hispanic. The Constitution is regularly disregarded in the search for drug convictions. The prohibition approach to the drug problem has not worked. Prohibition—whether of alcohol in the past or drugs today--produces just the effects it aims to prevent. Forced onto the black market, drug sales will inevitably fall into the hands of the most ruthless criminals. In the search for profit, these criminals will produce those drugs that are the most profitable and the easiest to produce. Thus when the price of cocaine goes up, crack (very cheap and highly addictive) is created. Gray argues that control, not prohibition, is the answer. Marijuana use should be controlled in much the same way alcohol is; hard-core drug addicts must be allowed treatment that includes legal access to the drugs on which they are dependent. A tightly controlled legal drug market would end illicit drug trafficking and its costs in blood and money.
Gray’s analysis is, of course, controversial. It is, however, argued eloquently and persuasively, and deserves a hearing.
- "AMERICAN REVOLUTION II" - 1970 - Documentary - Camera: Mike Gray and Howard Alk. Production Manager: Jim Dennett. Produced by Mike Gray and Howard Alk.
- "THE MURDER OF FRED HAMPTON" - 1971 - Documentary - Camera: Mike Gray and Howard Alk. Prod. Mgr: Jim Dennett. Produced by Mike Gray and Howard Alk.
- "THE GIFT" - 1973 - Documentary on Marc Chagall - Camera: Mike Gray. Sound John Mason. Produced by Chuck Olin.
- "THE CHINA SYNDROME" - 1979 - Feature - Columbia - Original story and screenplay by Mike Gray. Academy Award nominee.
- "WAVELENGTH" - 1980 - Feature - New World - Production Manager: Jim Dennett. Written and Directed by Mike Gray.
- "THE WARNING" - Accident at Three Mile Island" - 1982 - Book - W.W. Norton & Co. - by Mike Gray & Ira Rosen.
- "CODE OF SILENCE" - 1985 - Feature - Orion - Michael Butler and Dennis Shryack screenplay - rewritten by Mike Gray & John Mason. UPM: Jim Dennett
- "STARMAN" - 1986-7 - One hour television series - ABC/Columbia - Conceived by Mike Gray and John Mason with Henerson-Hirsch. Prodution Manager: Jim Dennett
Mason & Gray were writer-producers of the series pilot and 22 episodes, writing two episodes, with Gray directing the pilot and three episodes. Jim Dennett Produced all episodes.
- "STAR TREK: THE NEXT GENERATION" - 1988-9 - One hour television series - Paramount - Mike Gray & John Mason, writer producers
- "ANGLE OF ATTACK: Harrison Storms and the Race to the Moon" 1992 - Book - W.W. Norton & Co. - by Mike Gray 1994 - Paperback - Penguin Books
- "THE FUGITIVE" -1995 - Feature - Warner Bros. - second unit director
- "CHAIN REACTION" - 1995 - 20th Century Fox - production rewrite by Mike Gray
- "DRUG CRAZY: How We Got Into This Mess and How We Can Get Out" 1998 - Book - Random House - by Mike Gray
- "THE DEATH GAME: Capital Punishment and the Luck of the Draw" 2003 - Book - Common Courage Press
- "QUARTERBACK FOR THE MOON RACE" - 2002 - Screenplay - base on the book "Angle of Attack."